31 Mar 1945
  • German forces began withdrawing from the Netherlands. ww2dbase [TH]
  • Soviet troops captured Ratibor and Katscher, Germany (now Raciborz and Kietrz, Poland). ww2dbase [Silesian Offensive and the Siege of Breslau | CPC]
  • 50 Japanese Army Renraku-tei special attack boats sank American landing ship LSM-12 at Okinawa, Japan. ww2dbase [Renraku-tei-class | CPC]
  • Otto Skorzeny was ordered to go to the "Alpine Fortress". ww2dbase [Otto Skorzeny | CPC]
  • Soviet forces crossed into the Germany border from Sopron, Hungary. ww2dbase [TH]
  • As the troops of the French First Army crossed the Rhine River near Speyer, Germany, they became the first French troops to attack across the river since Napoleon Bonaparte. Meanwhile, US Third Army reached Siegen, Germany. ww2dbase [Crossing the Rhine | TH]
  • Allied commander Eisenhower demanded German surrender over radio. ww2dbase [Dwight Eisenhower | CPC]
  • USS Tirante sank a Japanese sail with gunfire. ww2dbase [Tirante | CPC]
Germany
  • On Heinrich Himmler's orders, men led by SS-Sturmbannf├╝hrer Heinz Macher attempted to use tank mines to demolish the SS castle of Schlo├č Wewelsburg in B├╝ren, Germany. The attempt only damaged the southeast tower, while the rest of the castle, was damaged by fires. The 9,000 SS Ehrenring (SS Honor Rings) stored at the castle were taken away by Macher and were buried at a secret location in nearby woods. ww2dbase [Schlo├č Wewelsburg | B├╝ren, Westfalen-Nord | CPC]
Guam
  • USS Sunfish departed Apra, Guam, Mariana Islands for her eleventh war patrol. ww2dbase [Sunfish (Gato-class) | Apra | CPC]
Hawaii Japan Norway Pacific Ocean
  • USS Spot, misidentified as a hostile submarine, was attacked by American destroyer USS Case; USS Spot did not suffer any damage by the two salvos fired. ww2dbase [Spot | CPC]
  • In the Philippine Sea, Japanese submarine I-361 with its deck loaded with five Kaitens was spotted on the surface by US Navy Lt(jg) Sam Stovall flying a TBM-3E Avenger from USS Anzio. The Avenger released a Mark 24 FIDO acoustic homing torpedo and I-361 was lost with all 76 hands plus the five Kaiten pilots. ww2dbase [TBF Avenger | Anzio | Kaiten-class | Mark XXIV | Philippine Sea | DS]
United Kingdom Photo(s) dated 31 Mar 1945
USS Makin Island at anchor at Kerama Retto, Ryukyu Islands, Japan, 31 Mar 1945

31 Mar 1945 Interactive Map

Timeline Section Founder: Thomas Houlihan
Contributors: Alan Chanter, C. Peter Chen, Thomas Houlihan, Hugh Martyr, David Stubblebine
Special Thanks: Rory Curtis




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Famous WW2 Quote
"All that silly talk about the advance of science and such leaves me cold. Give me peace and a retarded science."

Thomas Dodd, late 1945


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